Friday, 12 July 2013 23:08

Darius Jones Convicted of First Degree Murder, Especially Aggravated Kidnapping, Aggravated Kidnapping and Reckless Endangerment

Darius Jones Darius Jones SCSO
MEMPHIS, TN – July 12, 2013 - A Shelby County Criminal Court Jury convicted Darius Jones (age 28) of one (1) count of first degree murder, one (1) count of second degree murder, one (1) count of especially aggravated kidnapping, two (2) counts of aggravated kidnapping, one (1) count of reckless endangerment. Jones shot and killed his girlfriend, Cortessa Chambers (age 25), and threatened Chamber’s mother and held her children hostage during an altercation at their home in South Memphis.
Prosecutors presented proof during the trial that Darius Jones and Chambers were involved in an argument at the house in the 2500 block of Lagena in April 2011. Chambers left the house and Jones followed her into the driveway. As Chambers walked towards a car in the driveway, Jones, armed with a handgun, grabbed Chambers and attempted to bring her into the house. Chambers got away from Jones and tried to leave again. Jones grabbed Chambers, pointed the gun at her head and forced her into the house and into a bedroom. Chamber’s mother was inside the house with Chamber’s two (2) young children (ages 1 and 3). Chamber’s mother tried to intervene and stood between Jones and Chambers as they entered the bedroom. Jones raised the handgun, reached past Chamber’s mother and fired a shot at Chambers from close range, striking her in the head. Chamber’s mother ran out of the house.
Jones barricaded himself inside the house, holding the two (2) children hostage. Police arrived and arrested Jones.
Especially aggravated kidnapping is a class “A” felony with a sentence range between fifteen (15) to sixty (60) years with no possibility of parole. Aggravated kidnapping is a class “B” felony with a sentence range between eight (8) to thirty (30) years. Reckless endangerment is a class “E” felony with sentence range between one (1) to six (6) years.
Jones was sentenced to life in prison for the murder of Cortessa Chambers. He will be sentenced on August 7, 2013 for the remaining convictions.
Assistant district attorney Jeff Jones of District Attorney General Weirich’s Domestic Violence Prosecution Unit (DVU) and assistant district attorney Marques Young prosecuted the case.
The D.A.'s DVU utilizes a vertical prosecution approach in felony cases of domestic assault and homicide committed by intimate partners. In addition to holding offenders of intimate partner abuse accountable, the DVPU works closely with the Shelby County Family Safety Center to provide domestic violence victims and their families access to a full range of services and assistance.
Judge Lee Coffee presided in Criminal Court Division VII.